Saturday, 5 November 2011

Free Science Fiction RPGs

A brief list of science fiction pen & paper roleplaying games.

Finding games for my retro clone post suggested that most of the free games out there were based on classic fantasy archetypes. Thankfully some people out there are producing games with a science fiction twist for those what would rather fight space aliens instead of dragons. Some will be clones of older systems, others will be inspired by older systems. If you are willing to pay a little there are many more classic style science fiction RPGs that can be purchased for a pittance.

Mutant Future

[caption id="attachment_747" align="aligncenter" width="309" caption="Mutant Future Cover"]Mutant Future Cover[/caption]


Inspired By: Gamma World

Clone: Not quite. Uses the Labyrinth Lord rules as a base. I think the original was based on Advanced Dungeons and Dragons.

Free Download: Yes


Mutant Future is a nuclear post-apocalyptic science fantasy game.  It is created in the style of similar RPGs from the late 70s, but built around the core Labyrinth Lord rules so that these two games are fully compatible.

The sinister and sadistic bleating of spidergoats echoes in the night, a complementary chorus to the rustling of an unfortunate victim caught in their webs. In deep, dank caves to the north, corrupted humans take communion with an unspeakably evil abomination they worship as a god. Shrill cries from the fields can only mean the vomit flies are back, molesting your livestock.

In short, just another day in the Mutant Future!

Current Options (Not Free):

d6 Space

[caption id="attachment_814" align="aligncenter" width="231" caption="d6 Space"]d6 Space[/caption]


Inspired By: d6 Space

Clone: Not so much as just the old system released under an open license.

Free Download:


This book combines the best of 15 years of D6 System design, tailored to the science fiction genre. It covers all the basics for using the D6 System with your favorite settings.

  • Three different character creation methods -- customizing pre-constructed templates, using defined dice distribution limits, and distributing a pool of points -- allow each player to spend as much or as little time making a character while being compatible with the method other players choose.

  • Over 80 character options (Disadvantages, Advantages, and Special Abilities), each with numerous variations -- as well as a sampling of generic alien packages -- allow players to further customize their characters.

  • You have the option of relying on a Body Points or Wounds damage system, both equally interchangeable with a single combat system.

  • You get quick rules for cybernetics, ship travel, ship design, and metaphysics (a form of psionic reality manipulation).

  • You get to decide on the level of complexity with the essential rules separated from the optional rules.

  • Dozens of generic equipment and character examples offer starting points for adding your own science fiction tech, aliens, and denizens to your adventures.

The accessible format includes an introduction to using the book and the system, a solo adventure to test out the rules, and prefaces to each chapter that can help you locate the information you need.

Stars Without Number

[caption id="attachment_816" align="aligncenter" width="231" caption="Stars Without Number"]Stars Without Number[/caption]


Inspired By: Classic Science Fiction

Clone: Uses Labyrinth Lord rules transplanted to the future.

Free Download: Yes, also can be purchased from Mongoose with slightly more chapters.


Try our free flagship product, Stars Without Number, a game of science-fiction adventure inspired by old-school gaming aesthetics. Quick and familiar game mechanics are supported by extensive tools, tables, and tips for creating unexplored stellar sectors, enigmatic aliens, ferocious xenomorphs, and scheming interstellar factions. Game masters can take advantage of one hundred sci-fi adventure seeds designed to interlock with a world generation system involving five dozen descriptive “world tags”, each fleshed out with examples of friends, enemies, places, things, and complications appropriate to the tag. Resource tables for random generation of names, NPCs, religions, political parties, architectural styles, and room furnishings excel in generating the kind of fast, smooth content that sandbox gaming demands. Pick Stars Without Number up at DriveThruRPG; now also available in perfect-bound and hardback print versions.


X-plorers RPG

[caption id="attachment_817" align="aligncenter" width="231" caption="X-plorers RPG"]X-plorers RPG[/caption]


Inspired by: Action & Adventure Science Fiction

Clone: No

Free Download: Yes.


Put on your space suit, charge your ray rifle, and flip ignition on an outer-space adventure!
Imagine if the first RPG had been one of interplanetary adventure—rules-light, fast-paced, and inspired by a passion for science fiction. In X-plorers, you’re part of a group of galactic troubleshooters on the look out for the next job—whether it be salvage, search, or rescue on an alien world.



5 Nov, Initial post. Will add new games as and when I become aware of them,

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